Sunday, March 27, 2011

Spring Chickens

clockwise from top : Rainbow Swiss Chard, fresh peas, Spinach, Garlic and Onion Ciabatta Bread from When Pigs Fly, Rainbow Carrots, Roast Chicken. Middle of plate : Mascarpone Mashed Potatoes  
 Properly roasted chicken is really just one of the best meals on earth. Reliable and comforting, yes...but still always delicious and most definitely welcome. One of the many great things about it is that it's such a blank canvas...whatever season it is, whatever you have on hand or are in the mood for...everything goes with chicken. Every culture seems to have its own favorite way of doing it, and everyone borrows from everyone else happily.

On the menu today was a chicken with plenty of vegetables....more of a preview to spring than actual spring, but hey - a girl's gotta dream :) The bird itself was seasoned with half a lemon (cut into eighths) and half a dozen garlic cloves in the cavity, and salt (half kosher and half Smoked Mexican), cracked pepper, and smoked paprika all over. Into my stoneware baker and into a 350 degree oven...two hours later, a delicious, perfectly seasoned, super juicy bird.

With some CRAZY carrots !!

Rainbow Carrots
Seriously, so crazy !
I know, I know...I was already doing rainbow chard (as mentioned, my new vegetable crush) and I'm not a huge fan of cooked carrots....but when I saw these at Russo's I couldn't resist - I have never seen rainbow carrots ! They tasted...well, like really good carrots. Will definitely try these again. And I know, we already had two vegetables...but Mark has to have peas with chicken, so fresh peas it was.

Along with the peas, there have to be potatoes....and Mascarpone Mashed Potatoes are serious Culinary Orgasm material. Sounds so decadent, but couldn't be simpler...boil up a 3 pound bag of baby white potatoes (in the skin...that's why I use baby ones) and lightly mash with half a small tub of mascarpone cheese and a splash of milk (until they're the consistency you like), salt and pepper to taste. That's it, I promise....serious Culinary Orgasm !

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